- - Tuesday, September 25, 2012

FRANKFORT, Ky. — An anti-abortion activist who is running for Congress says he will air an ad this week in Kentucky and Indiana showing a dismembered fetus.

Andrew Beacham is running against Republican congressman Brett Guthrie, but not with the intent of winning. Instead, he is using his candidacy to criticize President Obama’s support for abortion rights.

Mr. Beacham says he is one of seven candidates affiliated with longtime anti-abortion leader Randall Terry, the founder of Operation Rescue. Mr. Terry said candidates will run anti-Obama ads in battleground states.

Rick McCue of WBKO-TV in Bowling Green, Ky., says the station can’t refuse to air the ad.

NEW YORK

Former President Clinton urges religious tolerance

NEW YORK — Former President Bill Clinton says the followers of Islam shouldn’t resort to violence when they hear their faith challenged in an increasingly diverse and Internet-connected world.

Mr. Clinton tells CBS “This Morning” that “you cannot live in a shame-based world. You won’t make it in the 21st century.”

He says in an interview broadcast Tuesday the United States wasn’t “disrespecting Islam” by declining to censor a film trailer that, quote, “nobody in authority knew anything about.”

Mr. Clinton says the world has learned the hard way that people must be allowed in a free setting to say and do things that others might find abhorrent. He adds, “You can’t react every time you’re insulted.”

Video clips of the movie appeared this month, sparking riots in Libya, Yemen, Pakistan and other countries in the Islamic world.

CAMPAIGN

Tea party blogger now on board with Akin

A tea party blogger who initially urged Rep. W. Todd Akin to step down after his “legitimate rape” gaffe is now calling on conservatives to support him, saying larger interests are at stake.

Tea Party Nation founder Judson Phillips wrote that “it’s time to take one for the team,” and support Mr. Akin — simply to stop his opponent, Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, from winning a second term and helping Democrats keep their Senate majority.

“We conservatives, as much as we may not like it, we must support Akin,” Mr. Phillips wrote. “He may mean the difference between Republican control of the Senate and failure.”

He framed it as a lesser-of-two-evils decision.

FTC

Tech industry against proposed privacy rules

Efforts by federal regulators to strengthen online privacy protections for children are over-reaching and will stifle U.S. innovation on the Internet, technology industry advocates said this week.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) says proposed rules under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) are designed to keep up with new technology and ensure privacy protections for children under 13 who use the Web.

“The FTC’s proposed COPPA rule-making takes the effort to protect online privacy and turns it into a harmful barrier to American innovation,” said Ken Wasch, president of the Software and Information Industry Association, which represents more than 500 technology companies.

The trade commission’s proposed regulation is “an overly broad and unworkable regulatory framework for implementing COPPA,” Mr. Wasch said in a statement Monday evening, adding that it “goes well beyond congressional intent.”

Monday was the final day for submission of public comments about the proposed regulation, which expands the definitions of several key terms used in the 1998 law, including “personal information” and “website or online service directed to children.”

The FTC did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

COLORADO

GOP officials find little fraud evidence

DENVER — Republican election officials who promised to root out voter fraud so far are finding little evidence of a widespread problem.

State officials in key presidential battleground states have found just a tiny fraction of the illegal voters they initially suspected.

Searches of voter lists in crucial swing states from Colorado and Florida have yielded numbers of ineligible voters that amount to less than one-tenth of 1 percent of all registered voters in either state.

Democrats argue that the searches waste time and, worse, could disenfranchise eligible voters who are swept up in the checks.

Republicans contend that voting fraud is no small matter, even if there are few cases, especially when some elections are decided by hundreds of votes.

CAMPAIGN

Biden makes appeal to Virginia’s middle class

Vice President Joseph R. Biden made a raw appeal to Virginia’s middle class, criticizing the Republican presidential ticket for pushing what he says is a blueprint for boosting middle-income taxes while giving trillions in tax breaks to the rich.

Mr. Biden said Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan represent a radical and obstructionist brand of conservatism that would sacrifice education and Medicare to help the wealthy.

He spoke to a crowd of more than 500 in a cramped tractor barn in a Republican-voting suburb of Richmond.

Polls show President Obama slightly ahead in the battleground state.

Mr. Biden said the GOP is “not your father’s Republican Party.” He added that his former Senate colleague, Virginia Republican John Warner, would never buy in to such extremism.

From wire dispatches and staff reports